The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has today given its Final Report to the Governor General. Many of the findings and recommendations will have significant impact on the way the Catholic Church operates in Australia.
“We acknowledge with gratitude the courage of all those survivors who have come forward to the Royal Commission,” Sr Ruth Durick OSU, President of Catholic Religious Australia said.
“We have witnessed the cost to survivors and their families in reliving their memories of abuse for all to see. We also know that there were so many more who told their stories in private to the Royal Commission and more still who hold their stories of abuse by the Church in their hearts, unable to share them.
“We acknowledge the pain carried by so many and the collective and individual pain that abuse in our Church has caused to individuals and their families.
“We recognise the far-reaching damage that has been done, and seek to do all that we can to keep children safe in our organisations.”
Catholic Religious Australia would like to acknowledge those many people who served the Royal Commission, whose lives have been impacted by the stories they have heard, and those in the Church who have worked tirelessly to change the practices of the Church to keep children safe in our present time and into the future.
Sister Ruth said that religious orders across Australia are committed to continuing the work of recent years to ensure a future in which the safety and protection of children and vulnerable adults is paramount.
“We will be taking very seriously the Royal Commission's report and, with the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, have commissioned an initial assessment of its findings by the Truth, Justice and Healing Council. We expect the TJHC assessment to be completed early in 2018.”
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